Which saucier is best?
In the pantheon of great French kitchen brigades, the saucier is among the most respected. This position in a kitchen is responsible for creating delicate finishing sauces and answers only to the sous-chef and head chef. But a cook is only as good as their last dish, and creating delicate sauces requires precision equipment.
The pan of a sauce maker shares its name. The best saucier holds its heat and lasts a lifetime. If you are looking for high-performance, heirloom-quality cookware, the Le Creuset Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Saucier is a good choice.
What to know before you buy a saucier
Saucier vs. saucepan
A saucepan is a more familiar kitchen tool for most home cooks. It features straight sides and a flat bottom, while a saucier has rounded sides and a rounded bottom. However, there are other differences too.
- Saucier: A saucier has less chance of burning food because it moves more easily along the sides. This makes them easier to clean too because there are no corners for food to get stuck in. This type of pan is better for preparations that require frequent stirring.
- Saucepan: Saucepans may be more familiar, but the greater surface area touching the burner often results in stuck or burned food. On the plus side, it’s easier to find a saucepan that fits a steamer basket. If you routinely steam vegetables, a saucepan may be a better choice.
As with other cookware, sauciers are available in a wide variety of materials.
- Stainless steel: Stainless steel is a durable choice. These conduct heat evenly and hold a good temperature.
- Aluminum: When combined with stainless steel, aluminum is also reliable. Aluminum on its own does not work on induction cooktops, and it is soft and less sturdy.
- Copper: Copper is a beautiful material, but it comes with a big price tag and a few drawbacks. It is challenging to keep its shiny rose glow. Unless it has another material that is magnetic, it does not work on induction cooktops.
- Ceramic: Ceramic coating over another material can be nonstick and heat evenly. However, in more cheaply made pots, the ceramic tends to flake off.
You can also choose a pot with a nonstick interior. This makes for easy cleanup, but professional chefs prefer an uncoated interior.
The size you select depends on what you’re planning to use the pan for. Sauciers come in sizes as small as 1.5 quarts, but they can also be found in 4 quarts or more. If you are planning on developing your sauce work but are unlikely to feed a crowd, choose a smaller pot.
What to look for in a quality saucier
Oven-safe cookware is more versatile. Look for pots that are safe up to 400 degrees or more. This should include the lids and handles as well.
Riveted handles offer more control and stability. They should feel comfortable and well-balanced in your hand as you work.
The body of a saucier is usually much smaller than a typical pan. The handle, however, needs to be long enough to keep hands out of harm’s way. Make sure the pot you buy feels well-balanced, even if the handle is longer.
Safe for induction cooktops
A magnetic material is required in order to heat on an induction cooktop. For the most flexible cookware, opt for a pan that can be used on every type of cooking surface you might encounter.
How much you can expect to spend on a saucier
As with all cookware, the brand, size and material influence the price. Expect to spend $60-$250.
Is a saucier just for sauces?
A. No. Although the gently rounded and sloped sides are perfect for developing delicate sauces, you need not reserve this utensil for sauce work alone. Because they are generally oven-safe to high temperatures, they work on both the stovetop and with indirect heat. Use it for:
- Dessert custards
- Cooking small amounts of pasta
- Braising tough cuts of meat
How do you care for a saucier?
A. Many can go directly in the dishwasher. However, keep in mind that copper will become discolored in a dishwasher. If your stainless steel pan has a copper bottom, stick to hand-washing with hot water and mild detergent.
What’s the best saucier to buy?
Le Creuset Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Saucier
What you need to know: This is the choice for serious sauce work and professional chefs at home.
What you’ll love: The triple-ply stainless steel construction surrounds an aluminum core that works on everything from gas stoves to induction burners. The handle is ergonomic, and the entire pot — including the lid — is oven-safe to 500 degrees. It comes with a limited lifetime warranty.
What you should consider: The only challenge here is the price tag. This is a glorious piece of kitchen equipment that lasts for generations.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top saucier for the money
Anolon Nouvelle Stainless Steel Saucier with Lid
What you need to know: For budding chefs on a budget, this is a well-designed and durable choice.
What you’ll love: Its 2.5-quart size is perfect for sauce work, and the mirror-polished stainless steel with copper bottom is elegant and classic. The lid sits deep on the pot, and both lid and pot are oven-safe to 500 degrees. It works on all cooktops, including induction burners, and is cleaned up easily in the dishwasher.
What you should consider: Some users found that the weight of the riveted handle was too much for the pot.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
Mauviel Made in France M’Heritage Copper 150s Saucier
What you need to know: It’s slightly smaller at 1.7 quarts, but it is a perfectly crafted, beautiful copper pan.
What you’ll love: It is 90% copper and 10% 18/10 stainless steel for even heat distribution and maintaining the correct temperature. The stainless steel handle is riveted to the body of the pot and designed to stay cool. It is lovely enough to serve at the table.
What you should consider: This does not work on induction cooktops, and copper requires special care to maintain.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Suzannah Kolbeck writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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